UK-headquartered Air Charter Service (ACS) is expanding its carbon offsetting program to include commercial passenger flights on March 1. The program is available for customer bookings through the firm’s Europe, North America, Africa, and Australia offices. ACS’s office and business travel operations have been carbon neutral since 2007.
“We appreciate that aviation is up there with the automotive industry and power generation as one of the industries that are producing carbon emissions,” said ACS CEO Justin Bowman. “Unfortunately, unlike those industries, ours is some way from having the technology to stop the reliance on burning fuel.” Funding reductions in carbon is a short-term solution, while the industry progresses toward longer-term solutions such as electric flight, he added, noting ACS has been funding electric flight efforts since 2014.
ACS analyzed aircraft fuel burn rates and route distances for 8,000 passenger charter flights over the past two years and decided 0.5 percent of the charter price would be an appropriate offset for each flight. That money will be deposited into an offset fund, which is used to purchase carbon credits.
“Should the monies collected not be sufficient to buy the correct number of carbon credits to fully offset a charter, ACS will make up the shortfall,” Bowman said. “Perhaps our biggest challenge in setting this up was the lack of data and the impossibilities of predicting how much carbon each flight will produce, as there are so many variables, including such aspects as weather, air traffic, and even the amount of luggage.”